Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Neighbourly Encounters...

It's been so hot here lately. We haven't had any rain in about two weeks and the ground is dry, the plants are drooping and everything just looks tired.

It's hard to find the energy to go out and do anything. Even if you start out with the best of intentions, you start to get busy outside but are driven in by the humidity and the bugs. Even with my magical Off mosquito fan, the tiny, horrible little fruit-fly like black bugs still converge on you when you go outside. On a coworker's advice, I've taken to using a dryer sheet hooked around my belt loop for additional defense. This does work, I'll have you know. Unfortunately, it doesn't help the puppies who are swarmed each time they sit on the grass. I thought about tying a dryer sheet around their collar but they'd only tear it off one another.

I suppose the good part about it being so dry is that the grass isn't growing which means there isn't much mowing to be done though I do have strange patches of very fertile grass that is always an inch or so taller than the rest of the grass. The neighbourhood seems strange without the hum of lawnmower engines each night but we're in the hottest part of the summer and no one really wants to mow.

Well, I should take that back. Potential-Serial-Killer-Larry wants to mow. Since there was a cool-ish breeze blowing this evening, I decided to take the puppies for a walk. They were getting a bit crotchety with everything. They snipe at one another, give me the cold shoulder and then get rather cross with the holes they're trying to big. This, I have to say, is a sight to see. They love to dig holes in the grass but there's only so deep they can dig even with their quite-large paws. Rory, especially, still gets so angry with the ground that she stomps, yips, and even does this peculiar hand-stand like thing trying to just get a little deeper. When Sookie starts to join in the 'yelling at the hole', I usually try to bring them inside to calm down.

I decided tonight that maybe they needed to burn off some of their sniping energy with a walk. We managed to get all the way around the block without anyone stopping us to pet the puppies. We also didn't see any of the r-a-b-b-i-t-s. I have to spell it these days because the pups have figured out what one of those is as well as b-u-n-n-i-e-s. I know they can't read but they're hypersensitive to the stupid creatures.

Of course, then we ran into Larry. He was mowing. It was 94 degrees out, supposedly up to a 100 degrees with the heat index. He was sweaty and not particularly appealing. I'd hoped to walk on by but, alas, he stopped the mower, just to say hi to me and the "fellas". He then proceeded to immediately launch into a tirade about the Dog Whisperer's beasts.

Don't get me wrong. It's extremely gratifying to hear someone else complain rather than just me. He's just trying to enlist me in his scheme to have the police stop by. While part of me really, really would love to see that happen, I've also got to live next to the Dog Whisperer and Wife of Dog Whisperer. Also, I like Wife of Dog Whisperer. I do not want to cause any bad blood because it would be awkward.

It's a bit of a dilemma. While I would love to see someone get those dogs under control, I also don't want to be involved. I know. It sounds passive aggressive but it's just one of those things I'm trying to learn to deal with while living in a neighbourhood. It's a fine line. While I do visualize doing mean things to those dogs such as squirting them in the face with my hose, I don't do it because I'm really not that cruel. Also, Wife of Dog Whisperer seems to try to control the dogs.

Also, a part of me is worried that because Sookie and Rory's second favourite game is Getting the Yappy Beasts Excited and then snickering behind the tool shed, there might be some blame placed on me. (If you're wondering, their first favourite game is Capture the a)Bunny, b) Cicada bugs, c) birds and d) butterflies.

So, I'm not sure what to do. Even if I tell Larry the potential serial killer that he's welcome to do what he likes but I can't be involved, I'm afraid the Dog Whisperer will blame me, anyway. I know they know that I'm annoyed. I've contemplated putting up some privacy netting to block the puppies from their dogs view but then the yappy beasts will only bark at me instead because it won't be tall enough to hide me.

So, I guess we're at an impasse. I told Larry that I'd like to give it a couple more weeks but, if the dogs really do bother him that much, to go ahead and do what he needs to do. I think the sad part is that I'm being somewhat desensitized to the barking. It still annoys me but I expect it. There's something wrong with that, I know but it's just an adjustment I've made.

I ended up getting stuck talking to Larry for a while. The puppies didn't seem to mind. They lay down and enjoyed the breeze. I don't mind but he's got that up-close-and-personal approach to chatting that tends to be a little invasive.

Still, he didn't show me his human hair nor did we find any bones outside his house so I'd consider that a good walk. He did leave me with some food for thought though. What do you all think? Shall I consent to his taking action or shall I let things lie? Suggestions and comments would be most welcome.

I'd ask the puppies advice since they, too, are bothered by the yapping but I'm afraid they'd just stare at me blankly and then take a lap up and down the fence, just long enough to incite a barking fest from the Dog Whisperer's beasts. Then they'll collapse in a pile far enough away that the beasts can still see them but the puppies can't be blamed for any ill activity, panting in the summer heat.

Still, at least we got our walk tonight. Running into Larry is always interesting, if a little uncomfortable.

I just wish he'd stop calling my girls "Fellas". Oh well, you have to pick your battles, I suppose.

Happy Wednesday.

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